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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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will1384
member


Reged: 02/22/13

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: rmollise]
      #6122279 - 10/07/13 12:02 PM

Quote:

Maybe, but trying to run on a dying battery didn't help the StarSense, and because of that your results really don't say much. As for the battery? The secret to keeping one alive is charging for 12-hours after each use, and charging once a month if it is not used over the course of a month.




I guess what failed to say, is that I replaced the battery I normally use with a fully charged battery from my truck, when I found the battery I normally use was bad.

The battery maintainer should have kept the battery charged, the battery was only a few months old, and the battery had not been used in over a month.

Quote:

Every time my StarSense has failed, it was operator error (e.g., my fault). I have just returned from the Staunton River Star Party and used the StarSense extensively to build pointing models and all-sky polar alignment. On Thursday evening, it was cloudy with only a few holes where the stars were seen. It took a little longer, but the StarSense solved successfully. I was using a SV115T20 with an Orion Starshoot III monochrome camera. I went from the extreme east to the west with the target within the image. For me, the StarSense works as advertised and well worth the price.

Caveat: It took me a while to understand and properly use the new hand controller. The scrolling and information provided was especially difficult after 3 years with a one-line hand controller. Also, I kept hiting enter instead of align when directed.

Regards,

Charlie B




I tried from about 8PM to 11PM, over and over and over and over, and yes I did read the manual, and yes I did what it said, I am going to try again tonight, and take notes, maybe I am missing a step or something.

I set the telescope pointing "roughly" north as I could not see Polaris, the first time I used the StarSense it already had the date and time set for California so I had to change that to my location, I then tried the StarSense auto alignment and no matter how many times I try it never does a successful alignment, so next I try the StarSense manual alignment, I turn the mount off and return the mount to its index marks and try the manual alignment, and am never able to do a successful alignment, each time it has said found 100 stars except a few times during auto alignment were it pointed at a tree and found none or near a tree and found less than 100, so I am not sure why the alignment is not working, tonight when I try again, I will use a compass to aim the mount, and if that fails, I will move back to the spot were I can see Polaris and use the polar scope to aim the mount.


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dr.who
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 01/05/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: will1384]
      #6122573 - 10/07/13 02:09 PM

Will-

I would suggest you follow the instructions I and others posted regarding this issue as it sounds like you are suffering from what we were. That should take care of it for you. The summary of those instructions are:

1. Go to teamcelestron.com
2. download the update software
3. download the additional firmware update
4. update the camera and HC per direction
5. Check camera calibration # if >+/- 1000 then continue to step 6 else open new ticket with them and stop here
6. Quick align
7. Go to named star like Altair, Vega, etc
8. Move mount so it actually appears in your EP
9. Calibrate camera
10. Check numbers again if < +/-1000 stop else repeat steps 6-10


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dan.ostler
member


Reged: 10/18/06

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: dr.who]
      #6123259 - 10/07/13 06:02 PM

I have my SS and am waiting for clear skies to check it out. The amount of problems related here are depressing and of course very frustrating for those affected.

I own a Nexstar 8 SE and would be very encouraged to hear that users with this type of mount are not having these problems (assuming no user errors occur).

Thanks
Dan


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brokenwave
sage


Reged: 05/10/11

Loc: Scottsdale, AZ
Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: dan.ostler]
      #6123276 - 10/07/13 06:08 PM

Dr. Who/or others, what is the latest version of the firmware that is actually working? Thx.
I don't have access yet but have created a Team C account.
Just waiting for a few more positive results to post here before buyinging a SSA for my CGEM.


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C8er
super member


Reged: 09/15/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: dan.ostler]
      #6123486 - 10/07/13 07:49 PM

Hi Dan,

I have bad problems with the SSA on my 8SE but I am in the southern hemisphere, and I have seen several people report that their SSA is working well with their 8SE mounts in the northern hemisphere, at least on the latest firmware versions available in the Team Celestron website. So as long as you are north of the equator you might be in luck!

Good luck with your first attempts.

Have a good careful read of the manual and double check your location and date and time are correct before you get too far into the align process.

You may get lockups (some of which you can get past just by pressing the back key on the HC) and some other problems during the align process if you don't join team celestron and download and update to the two later firmware versions for the new HC and one new version for the Camera available there.

I think it might also now be recommended on team celestron(but not in the manual yet) that you use a star near the celestial equator for your camera-ota calibration once you get to that stage after doing your initial autoalign, rather than just using any star for the camera calibrateas the manual suggests. Some people have had the camera calibration well and truly messed up by using stars in other parts of the sky.

I am about to start working closely with Celestron to help them fix what look like possibly being southern hemisphere problems on the SE mount.

Cheers,
Chris

Quote:

I have my SS and am waiting for clear skies to check it out. The amount of problems related here are depressing and of course very frustrating for those affected.

I own a Nexstar 8 SE and would be very encouraged to hear that users with this type of mount are not having these problems (assuming no user errors occur).

Thanks
Dan




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UBobW
member


Reged: 06/27/13

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: Stew57]
      #6123554 - 10/07/13 08:24 PM

Quote:

You found a cord wrap menu with the VX? I take it this SSA has the original firmware? Many of your problems have been alleviated with the firmware update.




Yep theres a cordwrap option on the ss controler on my adv vx. Im definitely on old code though it is surprising given that the unit just shipped out of Celestron CA on Oct 1.

Star sense HC ver 01.04.13290 bld May 22, 2013.
Starsense Camera ver 00.00.0000
Motor control MDL advanced VX azm ver 6.7 alt ver 6.7

Early adopter or not if the thing doesnt have the latest and greatest software out of the box, i should have some option of upgrading it and not have to wait and join a beta testers site and wait for access to get code that is 'better'

Bob


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C8er
super member


Reged: 09/15/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: brokenwave]
      #6123572 - 10/07/13 08:34 PM

Hi brokenwave.

If you can wait I think it might be best if you hang on till your team celestron account is approved and look there for yourself, as it should then be fairly obvious to you at that stage what the latest firmware versions are, and what they are designed to fix. I suggest that because the latest versions and problem fixes available there today might not be the latest versions in a day or two when you get approved and given access to the SSA areas.

When you ask what is the latest version that is actually working the answer isn't that simple yet, and depends on your model of mount(s), whether you have Eq or alt-az or both types of mounts, possibly whether you are northern or southern hemisphere, and possibly other factors as well. It might be hard to find any one person who can tell you the answer for your configuration right now because of all the variations.

Celestron seem to be working on fixes for the problems all the time and are talking fairly regularly to people in team celestron now, so you will find a whole pile of up to date information on various mounts and how they seem to be working with SSA units once you are on the site properly and have had a good read of the SSA threads there.

Cheers,
Chris

Quote:

Dr. Who/or others, what is the latest version of the firmware that is actually working? Thx.
I don't have access yet but have created a Team C account.
Just waiting for a few more positive results to post here before buyinging a SSA for my CGEM.




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brokenwave
sage


Reged: 05/10/11

Loc: Scottsdale, AZ
Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: C8er]
      #6123614 - 10/07/13 09:08 PM

Dr. Who, Thanks, I am a LX80 owner who had to deal with teething issues as well. Will bide my time until there are some good reviews. But the concept of 3 minute aligns are sure tempting only if it works as advertised. I will start working on my drift align technique until it's ready.

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C8er
super member


Reged: 09/15/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: UBobW]
      #6123620 - 10/07/13 09:10 PM

Hi Bob,

Those are very unusual firmware versions for a production unit I think, as my production unit shipped in early september had higher numbered/dated versions of both the HC and camera firmware, which I have comfirmed with celestron were the standard production unit versions.

I know you would rather not have to, and I understand your reasoning on why, but the situation is what it is now, and in your case in particular it might pay you to join team celestron, check with the firmware engineers you can talk directly to there about your curent versions, and possibly update if they recommend that. I think you will find them friendly and helpful, and they have been very responsive there in the last couple of weeks.

Cheers,
Chris M

Quote:

Im definitely on old code though it is surprising given that the unit just shipped out of Celestron CA on Oct 1.

Star sense HC ver 01.04.13290 bld May 22, 2013.
Starsense Camera ver 00.00.0000
Motor control MDL advanced VX azm ver 6.7 alt ver 6.7

Early adopter or not if the thing doesnt have the latest and greatest software out of the box, i should have some option of upgrading it and not have to wait and join a beta testers site and wait for access to get code that is 'better'

Bob




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Stew57
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: C8er]
      #6123630 - 10/07/13 09:18 PM

It seems to me that they are close to a public release. the big thing not working for the northern hemisphere crowd is the ASPA. For the southern crowd they still need a little more work. It looks like a release should not take long.

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dr.who
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 01/05/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: brokenwave]
      #6123787 - 10/07/13 11:09 PM

Quote:

Dr. Who/or others, what is the latest version of the firmware that is actually working? Thx.
I don't have access yet but have created a Team C account.
Just waiting for a few more positive results to post here before buyinging a SSA for my CGEM.




Hey mate-

The code on the teamcelestron is 1.6.13268 but you have to update to the previous rev using the beta update manager so as to get the camera firmware first then go to this version. It has fixed quite a few of the problems for GEM folks including myself unless you are in the Southern hemisphere in which case you are out of luck as I recall. So you should be safe going with a CGEM if you are in the Northern hemisphere.

Also on the subject of "so many problems"... Remember that it hasn't been every one released only a subset and Celestron has quickly fixed the problems in relation to the LX80 debacle of which I was a part. To the point where I gave up and my local shoppe was kind enough to take it back.


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dr.who
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 01/05/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: C8er]
      #6123789 - 10/07/13 11:11 PM

Quote:


I think it might also now be recommended on team celestron(but not in the manual yet) that you use a star near the celestial equator for your camera-ota calibration once you get to that stage after doing your initial autoalign, rather than just using any star for the camera calibrateas the manual suggests. Some people have had the camera calibration well and truly messed up by using stars in other parts of the sky.





Hey Chris-

This was specific to EQ mounts I believe. For Alt/Az you should be ok. Save for that whole Southern hemisphere issue...


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dr.who
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 01/05/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: brokenwave]
      #6123796 - 10/07/13 11:13 PM

Quote:

Dr. Who, Thanks, I am a LX80 owner who had to deal with teething issues as well. Will bide my time until there are some good reviews. But the concept of 3 minute aligns are sure tempting only if it works as advertised. I will start working on my drift align technique until it's ready.




Cheers mate. I too was a part of that! Bloody rubbish it was and so poorly handled I was embarrassed for Meade.

I think you are safe if you want to go forward but ultimately the choice is yours and it is worth it in many cases.


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Jim Meadows
member


Reged: 09/12/13

Loc: MS
Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: brokenwave]
      #6123922 - 10/08/13 12:25 AM

Quote:

But the concept of 3 minute aligns are sure tempting only if it works as advertised.




Even though I do not have the StarSense working on my CG-5 EQ mount yet, it is working fine on my SE Alt-Az mount and I am loving it!

I have a C5 on my SE mount with an external GPS plugged into its Aux port and the StarSense HC plugged into the GPS pass through port. This turns out to be a nice grab and go configuration that I leave set up. I can pick it up, take it outside, turn it on, wait for the 30 sec startup, then initiate the Auto Align and watch. It gets the time/date/loc from the GPS so I don't have to enter anything. Two minutes later I am viewing selected objects!! It puts the objects in my 14mm TeleVue EP every time.

Jim


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will1384
member


Reged: 02/22/13

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: dr.who]
      #6123953 - 10/08/13 12:47 AM

Quote:

Will-

I would suggest you follow the instructions I and others posted regarding this issue as it sounds like you are suffering from what we were. That should take care of it for you. The summary of those instructions are:

1. Go to teamcelestron.com
2. download the update software
3. download the additional firmware update
4. update the camera and HC per direction
5. Check camera calibration # if >+/- 1000 then continue to step 6 else open new ticket with them and stop here
6. Quick align
7. Go to named star like Altair, Vega, etc
8. Move mount so it actually appears in your EP
9. Calibrate camera
10. Check numbers again if < +/-1000 stop else repeat steps 6-10




I may try that, but tonight it was "somewhat" working, I must have not had it pointed accurately enough toward the north yesterday, tonight I used a compass and level to point the tripod north, and the auto alignment was sometimes able to finish, but about every other time I tried the auto alignment it stopped on "acquiring image" and I had to power down, also if I did an auto alignment then added calibration reference images then did a polar align, the polar align would always be way off, so badly off I did not have enough adjustment to put the star in the center of the eyepiece, however if I did a auto alignment then polar align it seemed to work.


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dr.who
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 01/05/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: will1384]
      #6124868 - 10/08/13 12:48 PM

Ah. Right. ASPA is not working on the unit at the moment. But something doesn't track here no pun intended. You don't use polar align for GOTO accuracy once you have aligned the scope using either 2+4 or the SSA you use it for tracking. So it should not be impacting your initial auto align.

If you have done the two updates to the firmware then you should wait on the ASPA until they fix it. If you need it for AP then you can do a rough polar with it then drift align afterwards to correct how far off it is then do another auto align to correct things.


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munchmeister
sage
*****

Reged: 04/04/12

Loc: Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: Jim Meadows]
      #6125624 - 10/08/13 06:38 PM

Quote:

Quote:

But the concept of 3 minute aligns are sure tempting only if it works as advertised.




Even though I do not have the StarSense working on my CG-5 EQ mount yet, it is working fine on my SE Alt-Az mount and I am loving it!

I have a C5 on my SE mount with an external GPS plugged into its Aux port and the StarSense HC plugged into the GPS pass through port. This turns out to be a nice grab and go configuration that I leave set up. I can pick it up, take it outside, turn it on, wait for the 30 sec startup, then initiate the Auto Align and watch. It gets the time/date/loc from the GPS so I don't have to enter anything. Two minutes later I am viewing selected objects!! It puts the objects in my 14mm TeleVue EP every time.

Jim



Glad to know I am not the only one with a working Starsense and loving it!! I use my Casio "atomic watch" which syncs with WWVB, a NIST time signal radio station near Fort Collins, Colorado, where I live, so that helps. Can't believe how easy alignment has become.


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dr.who
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 01/05/12

Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: munchmeister]
      #6125832 - 10/08/13 08:48 PM

Oh I enjoy mine as well. Still working out some kinks moving it from OTA to OTA but that is on me not on it.

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Stew57
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: dr.who]
      #6126111 - 10/08/13 11:28 PM

If they can get the ASPA working I will be giving it a 2 thumbs up. Right now it is only slightly faster and slightly more accurate than the standard 2+4 alignment and lacks the ASPA. For the price I expected a bit more. Just taking it off and putting it back on the same OTA requires a recalibration of center to be accurate. Keeping it mounted on my mount helps with this though. I don't want to be too negative because it has its good points. I just don't want to have someone disappointed not knowing all the facts after just reading the ad copy at this price point.

Remember this is half the price or more than a CG5 with a hand controlled included.


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Charlie B
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 03/22/08

Loc: Sterling, Virginia
Re: Celestron StarSense new [Re: Stew57]
      #6126704 - 10/09/13 10:34 AM

Quote:

If they can get the ASPA working I will be giving it a 2 thumbs up.




Why do you think that ASPA is not working? It works fine for me.

Charlie B


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